FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Le’Veon Bell, who has been ill, didn’t practice Thursday and Friday, and Adam Gase couldn’t predict whether the running back will face the Dolphins on Sunday at MetLife Stadium. He’s listed as questionable.
“I think I’ll have more information probably by [Saturday],” Gase said Friday. “We’ll just kind of see how he feels . . . The biggest thing was to get him checked out and then get him out of the building so nobody else gets sick.”
If he can’t go, Bilal Powell and Ty Montgomery are ready for more ground work.
The Jets (4-8) have the NFL’s second-worst running game, ranked ahead of only Miami (3-9). They signed Bell in March to a four-year, $52.5 million deal, but he has averaged only 3.2 yards per carry, rushing 183 times for 589 yards and three touchdowns.
The sixth-year pro, whose single-game rushing high this season is 70 yards, has carried fewer than 20 times in all but one game. He has 55 receptions but is averaging only 7.3 yards per catch.
Bell said on this week’s Uninterrupted 17 Weeks podcast on SiriusXM/Pandora that he had been accustomed to “getting the ball 20, 25, 30 times” a game and added, “I would love to put the game on my back and take games over. I haven’t had one of those games this year yet.
“A lot of people don’t think I’m the same player or that I can’t do that. That’s just because I haven’t had the opportunity really to show. As time goes on, we’ll get better.”
Powell, who’s in his ninth season and is the longest-tenured Jet, has only 32 carries for 125 yards, good for 3.9 per try. Montgomery, a running back/receiver in his first year here and fifth overall, has rushed only 19 times for 60 yards and made only eight catches for 54 yards.
“In regards to Ty, I feel like, in my head, I thought we’d be able to use him a lot more,” Gase said. “I feel like the play count with the number of plays we’ve had per game haven’t been ideal for us to get these guys as many snaps as we wanted.”
Montgomery said he’s “happy to be a part of something that’s growing.” He indicated that he expected to be used more, though, saying, “I wouldn’t have came here if they didn’t tell me that. But that’s how it is.”
Powell has run for 3,571 yards and needs 19 to pass Bill Mathis for eighth on the franchise’s all-time rushing list.
“I’m worried about the team first,” he said, “going to get a ‘W’ versus the Dolphins.”
Notes & quotes: The secondary is hurting. Safety Jamal Adams (ankle) and cornerback Arthur Maulet (calf) are doubtful and slot cornerback Brian Poole (concussion) is out. Safety Matthias Farley (rib/ankle) is doubtful and cornerback Maurice Canady (illness/quadriceps) is questionable . . . Tackle Chuma Edoga (knee) is doubtful.